ABINGTON — The Abington football team made sure coach Jim Kelliher’s 50th Thanksgiving Day game on the Green Wave sideline as a player or coach was capped with a win.
Seniors Justin Keleher and Mark Kilmain each rushed for a score and Drew Landers kicked a 22-yard field goal and caught a 61-yard pass from Jack Maguire as the Green Wave (7-4) rose past Whitman-Hanson, 23-12, in the 107th Thanksgiving meeting between the teams.
Junior Ethan Phelps had passing and rushing touchdowns for Whitman-Hanson (7-4).
Kelliher was awarded with a No. 50 jersey signed by players throughout the years and a commemorative game ball.
“I grew up here, I’ve been around a long time,” said Kelliher, who dyed his hair green for the game. “I love it. It’s a nice hometown, and the kids give every ounce they can give you.
“I love what I do. It’s just a great time doing it with the group that we have,” said Kelliher. “I just love the game of football.”
“That guy is one of the best guys I’ve ever met in my entire life. He’s a class act, everyone in town loves him,” said senior Brian Cashman. “He brings that traditional emotion to every game, every practice. Nothing beats playing next to Coach Kel.”
For the team of 15 seniors, it was a bittersweet ending to a season in which the team reached the Division 7 South final.
“It’s an unreal feeling. Last game ever on this field, last game strapping on the pads with my brothers,” said Maguire. “It’s an unreal feeling knowing we’re taking home that trophy, knowing we have that for the rest of the year.”
Lenny Rowe can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.